How to be safe at an ABM!

Author : teriann

Everybody talks about how to be safe while shopping and in fact I have written about safety tips while using ABM (Automated Banking Machines). However imagine my dismay when I saw several consumers doing what could potentially result in dangerous situations.

As I stood in line waiting for my turn at the ABM on Constant Spring Road in Kingston, I noticed several persons who seemed unaware of the danger of their actions.

One person asked a stranger to ‘help’ them inside the ABM, while another person exited with their money in full view as she counted her cash.¬† There were other persons on their phone the entire time they used the ABM which of course can cause you to become distracted.

An elderly gentleman almost left his card in the machine as he exited, fortunately he realized his mistake and retrieved it before leaving the area.

Are we too complacent?

Why do persons continue to make such bad decisions? I think that persons forget sometimes how desperate people have gotten and especially during the holiday season.

The holiday season is especially bad because everywhere you look there are advertisements to ‘buy now’; however if you have no money with which to do so the temptation increases for those who are criminally inclined.

Therefore an inattentive shopper’s trip to the ABM can change from an easy access to your cash to an easy way to get your cash stolen.

How to be safe. There are several ways to be safe when using ABM machines. Here are some important tips:

Be attentive

Be aware of your surroundings so that means no phones and keep an eye out for anyone acting suspicious. I find that some people are hanging around the machine but not waiting to use it, that is suspicious so ensure that you keep alert. I also don’t go alone if the ABM is in an area that is trouble prone or if it’s late at night.

Ensure that as you enter the door is locked securely from the inside before you begin any transaction.When inside the machine don’t blindly stick your card in any slot you see, instead¬† examine the machine carefully to make sure there are no strange or unusual devices attached. I also like to cover the keypad as I enter my personal number.

Reject Any Offers of Help

Don’t allow anyone to assist you in conducting an ABM transaction, even if you have trouble or your card is jammed. I like using ABM’s during banking hours that way if there is any challenge they can be addressed by a banking representative.

If there is an emergency though you can call from the machine as the customer service representative can assist you on the phone.

Better to be safe than sorry! So how do you ensure that you are safe when using an ABM? Let me hear from you!

Teri Ann Renee Paisley
Gleaner Online Writer

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